I woke up this morning and wondered what the point was. Not so much in getting up, either, but just in everything in general.
This isn’t the first time I’ve had that thought. This year, this month, this week. But it felt significant, possibly, because I knew I had a blog to write. I had a blog to write and had nothing to put into it.
I’ve said before how the times when I feel like I have nothing to write often end up being the times when I have the most to say, and while I’m certain I’ll be proven right today, there are times when I almost wish I was wrong.
There are days when you don’t want to write, to create, to put anything into the world, because you don’t know what the point is. And I’ve had enough of these days that I’m starting to wonder if they, like everything else, aren’t just a part of the process.
Creativity is, by its very nature, the changing of the world in some way. That’s what creativity means. I actually looked up the dictionary definition and the second entry reads:
the ability to transcend traditional ideas, rules, patterns, relationships, or the like, and to create meaningful new ideas, forms, methods, interpretations, etc.; originality, progressiveness, or imagination.
Is that not the most beautiful thing you’ve ever read? I’m seriously in awe of it. That’s what creativity is. The transcendence of the way things are in favor of the way they never have been.
In however small a way, when we are being creative, we are changing the world. But sometimes the world doesn’t change, not as much as we’d like. Sometimes, the moment we’re done, it all seems to go back to exactly how it was. That hurts. It can be disheartening. It can feel like we aren’t making an impression.
It’s then that we often ask, “what’s the point?” If what we’re doing isn’t having an impact, if nothing stays around long enough, what’s the point?
It seems like the most selfish thing in the world to ask what we’re getting out of it, but when we put so much effort, so much of ourselves, into something, we can’t help but wonder why it isn’t at least making us feel better. It’s true, you can’t judge by results, certainly not immediate results. What looks like failure in the moment can be success later on. Things take time.
But we still ask sometimes. We still wonder what the point is. I think we need to.
Because there are days when you wake up and won’t believe it. I had one this morning. I wondered if anything was ever going to change. For a moment, I believed it wouldn’t.
Sometimes you believe that nothing is ever going to change. I wish this weren’t true, but it happens. You’ll believe that nothing is working, nothing is making a difference, all your effort is wasted. You’ll honestly believe that where you currently are is where you’re going to be forever.
The good news is: that’s never been true.
I know it’s not ironic in the least that I’m writing this blog right after last week’s. Change is a part of life, whether we like it or not. Which is bad news when we want things to stay the same, but it’s good news on days like today, when we so desperately want to move on.
I feel like I’m stuck some days, but the truth is I’ve never been stuck anywhere for all that long. I certainly felt stuck at the time, but it didn’t end up being permanent. And that’s a good thing to be reminded of.
Which is why I think we need to ask the question. I think we have to occasionally ask ourselves “what’s the point?” So that we can be reminded of what the point is.
And the point is that it all matters. Every sacrifice, every bit of effort, every hustle, every disappointment and heartbreak, every failure, every success however small, every day we were too sick to try, and every day we tried anyway. It all matters.
We can’t see it. Not fully. We’ll get glimpses now and then. We’ll get those little victories that we need to celebrate. But we’re going to miss the bigger picture, the true impact of our creativity, because we are just not going to have that information. But we can still believe. We need to believe for that very reason. Because the belief will often be the only thing we have, but it can carry us through.
It can help us answer the question in the moment when we are really doubting the answer. It can remind us of the point.
And the point is we are changing the world. Little by little, every day. Even, and especially, when we aren’t sure we are.
So, let’s go. Change the world.